There are few things worse than waking up in the morning, stumbling to the bathroom, turning on the shower, and then stepping in only to realize that the water that should be nice and warm is freezing. This type of wake up call may make you think that it is time to get rid of your old hot water heater and replace it with a new one, but many water heater problems can be repaired by a plumber and don't require you to shell out the cash for a whole new gas water heater unit. Some common water heater problems that can typically be repaired include:

Water Does Not Heat Up

Several things can cause a gas hot water heater to not produce hot water. One of the most common problems is the pilot light going out, which can be solved by relighting it according to the instructions printed on the tank. In some cases the issue may also be caused by the gas inlet valve being closed; if you have visually checked and can see that the gas inlet valve is open but the pilot light will not ignite, you should contact a plumber to have him or her check the thermocouple to see if it is broken and needs to be replaced.

Water is Too Hot

In some situations, a gas hot water heater can malfunction and make the water coming out of the tap way too hot. The first thing you can try to do is adjust the thermostat to a colder setting; try out the water again a few hours later--if it is still extremely hot, that is a sign that the temperature-pressure (TP) relief valve is faulty and is not releasing pressure from built up steam like it is supposed to. A plumber can install a new TP relief valve, and that should solve your hot water woes.

Discolored Hot Water

It can be quite alarming to turn on your hot water only to see a brown or discolored liquid coming out of the tap. In many cases, this occurs because there is an excess of sulfates and sediments in the water. The first thing to try in order to solve the problem is to have your hot water flushed. If you still experience discolored water after flushing the hot water tank, you most likely need to have the anode rod in your gas hot water heater replaced.

Contact a service like Mechanical Energy Systems for more details.